10 Years
Feb 17, 2011
I am wondering if any other readers have experienced what I would term harassment because they have chickens?
I moved to the country almost 16 years ago and we got chickens about 12 years ago. Since that time I have had a new neighbor move in next door. She harassed the man who lives behind us so much about his chickens he finally just let them all run loose. And where did they run but to the neighbor who had feed - me! They were wild gamey chickens who slept in the trees and ate her cats' food from her front porch.
Next she set her sites on me. I kept telling the law enforcement that the wild chickens were not mine, but I still got the tickets for them. I agreed to let the animal control people pick up the wild bunch, but they also took off with a number of my flock. I still continued to get tickets from this neighbor's complaints. My flock is well mannered and stay in my 2 acre yard, front and back. They sleep in a hen house and are locked up every night. They produce lots of eggs that I give away. I had many problems because the law enforcement could not differentiate between my flock and the wild bunch, even though I told them those did not belong to me and I continued to get tickets. I also got and continue to get tickets for my rooster crowing as a nuisance. They also consider my flock to be dangerous animals.
Finally after all two years the tickets have been set to be heard by the local judge on Nov. 20th.
Does anyone know of a defense I can offer? I was thinking about applying the right to farm act passed by Carter. Does anyone have personal knowledge of it?
There are no ordinances that prohibit me from having my flock and they use the one that generally applies to wild dogs and such.
I thoroughly enjoy my chickens and don't want to give them up while I am still able to care for them.

Miss Mary
Wish I could help but all I can give is the best of luck. This sounds like a terrible situation. I am so sorry for your loss of your flock. I think this is absolutely ridiculous of the neighbor and law enforcement. Hope you get some help and stay strong.
I do not have any legal Knowledge, about your particular Act of Legislation, but the Ticketts should openly declair, what Law is being infring'd, and so can be research'd.

With Respect to the wild chiCkens, I would advize making perfect Clarity, to the Judge, their Feralness and your lack of Responsibility of them. The Cock may have to be a Discard, for the Laws frequently prohibit Cocks, for various Reasons.
Wow. The man who lives behind you must be a HE-MAN to let an old biddy molest him into getting rid of his chickens. Sounds like the ol' witch needs someone to put her in her place. I believe in being respectful to all, and expect the same in return. Start acting/talking trash....give 'em as good as they give you!

She needs to meet Uncle Buck......."ALL good kids, until dried-out, brain-dead skags like you drag them down and convince them they're no good. You so much as scowl at my niece, or any other kid in this school, and I hear about it, I'm coming looking for you! Take this quarter, go downtown, and have a rat gnaw that thing off your face! Good day to you, madam."

Nothing like having someone tell you off fluently!
How many chickens do you have? My suggestion would be to ankle tag them. Then it would be easy to tell the onery ones from yours.

Do it now so you seem proactive.

Place an ad for anybody that wants to round up the wild flock.

Your defense at that point would be that it is the city's responsibility to deal with feral pests, not yours.
A few questions:

In what town/county/state do you live?

I realize that you said country, but just to clarify, are you in fact outside the city limits?

How many hens and roosters to you have?

How far is the coop from your neighbor's house?

What are the tickets citing you for?

What are your neighbor's complaints beyond the rooster crowing?
I'm an Aussie, so I have little or no idea about your state laws, but surely if in America you have the right to "bare arms" you are completely with in your rights to produce fresh eggs. Or at least have the chickens to do so. Perhaps that neighbor would respond nicely to some free eggs.
My take on some people to move to the country: They dream of acres of manicured, landscaped lawn. Fresh air. Build a $500,000 house. Dream of watching deer in the distance playing in a field. Turkeys gobbling in the morning, coyotes howling at night. When the reality is deer eating all your hostas, turkeys scratching at all your flower beds. Coyotes coming after your Shih tzo. The smell of manure when the wind blows. The neighbors chickens pooping on your driveway. Roosters crowing. Large equipment running up and down the road through out the night during harvest season. AND then they call the law wanting ordinances changed to protect THEIR way of life. Who's encroaching on who here?
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Fancychooklady, I agree it's ridiculous. We can own firearms, yet in many parts of this once-great country, folks have rolled over and played dead for so long that the idea of going against the current terrifies them. The simple fact remains that fools are not restrained to any particular latitude/longitude, and can therefore live anywhere they are tolerated.

Olefarmersdaughter, I agree concerning the misplaced American yuppie. They want to live country, but don't realize that "country" is watching where you step as you walk to the mailbox.

People cite property values as the biggest thing in regard to bullying others. I don't care who you are, or where you live, the idea that your neighbor owning chickens lowers your property value is a farce. It only shows how shallow people's values really are. My house is my house. I built it with my own two hands. I built it for me and my family to live in, for my wife and me to grow old in. And I will fight anyone, physically, before I'll let them dictate to me what I can or cannot do here. I was told I would have to have a rail around my porch. I've been living in the house for nearly 11 years now, and there is no rail. Ain't gonna be one either.

I can get along with anyone, but I can't stand a dictator. The regime under which I reside allows abortion, but if/once a child is born, expresses such extreme concern for the child, that they will kindly charge you a fine if they catch you transporting said child in a manner they deem unsafe. I can ride a motorcycle un-tethered to it, risking my body being flung great distances in the event of a crash, but if I'm in my truck, I'm supposed to wear my seat belt, so I'll be easy to find if I wreck. For this simple reason, I DO NOT wear a seat belt, and have absolutely no respect for any tin-badge-wearing-Barney who hands out tickets for such stupid infractions. I figure if/when they restrict urinating to every other day, most folks will just swell up and turn yellow rather than realize it's a natural occurrence.

America needs a William Wallace. William Wallace: There's a difference between us. You think the people of this country exist to provide you with position. I think your position exists to provide those people with freedom.

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